It's been a while since I've mentioned Lucy.

In fact, I haven't talked about her since just after we beat FIU.  You remember the letter I wrote to her.

Well, let me catch you up on what happened since then.

I did go looking for her after the win over FIU to put the Cajuns at 3-1.  Couldn't find her anywhere.  Not at the park, not near the school, even her house was without activity.

So I blew it off.

We had a three game homestand anyway.  I figured sooner or later she'd show up, football in hand, grin on her face.


Not after the Cajuns beat FAU, not after the butt-whipping they handed to the five time defending champions, not after the Cajuns proved the Green wasn't so mean.

So I went looking for her.  We had six wins.  I had a ball to kick.

I smiled as I walked over to her street.  But my smile faded when I got to her house.

It was empty.

She and her family were gone......and I felt cheated.

All those times she had fooled me.  All those times I fell right on my rear end after screaming ARRRGHHHH!

I asked around.  No one knew what had happened to Lucy Van Pelt and her football.  I thought maybe, just maybe she'd reappear after the debacle at Western Kentucky. Nope.  And, after the Cajuns won the next two against Middle Tennessee and ULM, I was sure she was gone for good.

But I never got the satisfaction of finally being able to kick the damn ball.

On November 20th when the Cajuns got the official invitation to the R&L Carriers New Orleans Bowl, I thought of her.  But the desire for revenge had faded.  She was gone....out of my life.....she wouldn't torment me again.

And, by the time December 17th rolled around and Brett Baer's field goal sailed throught the uprights, she was no longer a part of my thought process.  Lucy was gone for good.  The Cajuns had a bowl championship and that was all that mattered.

Imagine my surprise when I went to the mailbox yesterday.  There was a Christmas Card in the mail.

It was from Lucy Van Pelt.

"As you know by now," the note read, "we moved back in October.  It was so much fun over time as I tricked you again and again.  I guess the timing was right to go somewhere else.  I'm happy where I am and there are sooooooo many just like you where I live now.  I don't know how long I'll get to torment these people here, but, from the people I've talked to, they, like you, have been waiting to kick the ball.  They just haven't had ME.  Now they do.  I'm already having soooooooo much fun.  Merry Christmas!!!

It was simply signed Lucy.

I was curious.  I had already thrown the envelope away that contained the card.

I had to know.

So, I went to the wastebasket and pulled the envelope out.

I looked at the postmark.

Monroe, Louisiana.